M A I N   N E W S

TN puts Hogenakkal on hold

Chennai, April 5
Tamil Nadu today put on hold the Hogenakkal Integrated Drinking Water Project, ending a week- long standoff between the state and neighbouring Karnataka over the issue which had sparked violence in both the states.

In a statement, Chief Minister M. Karunanidhi said his government would “wait” till a popular government was installed in Karnataka after the May assembly polls and hoped that the new ministry would abide by the 1998 agreement to implement the water project.

“Let bygones be bygones. Let the future be bright. We will wait till President’s rule in Karnataka comes to an end and an elected government assumes charge after the polls. Let us wait for a few days only. I hope that a popular government will understand our demand and abide by the 1998 agreement to implement the scheme,” Karunanidhi said.

“If the situation continues even after the polls there, we will tell the world that Tamils, even at the cost of their lives, will not be people without self respect. We will wait till a popular government is in place there. I expect the co-operation of the new government for the scheme,” he said.

The Rs 1334-crore project, for which Karunanidhi laid the foundation stone in February, triggered off a political storm in Karnakata with pro-Kannada groups and political parties resorting to protests, objecting to its implementation.

Karunanidhi’s decision is seen as an apparent bid to help his ally Congress in Karnataka before the polls, as the scheme has snowballed into a major election issue there. His statement was aimed at cooling down frayed tempers in both states, where agitating parties have sought the Centre’s intervention for an amicable settlement. — PTI




Jaya opposes Karuna’s move

Chennai: Opposing Karunanidhi’s decision to put the Hogenakkal water project on hold till a new government takes over in Karnataka, AIADMK leader Jayalalithaa today accused him of betraying the people of the state by linking the project to Karnataka polls.

The decision is a “great betrayal of the people of Tamil Nadu,” she said. — PTI



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